The Oman Daily Observer – Sunday September 16th 2012
My Website – www.majidall.com
Between Us Only! – OUTLOOK!
The Emergence Of A New Dawn!
It was a new great leaning opportunity and awakening for me this week – when I had visited this Company Clinic for my usual Diabetic Check Ups – and when I met some fellow patients – and what followed next in eavesdropping conversations – before I got drawn in inadvertently!
There are two versions of the story – or two sides of the same story. As I sat there I met these young Omani youngsters coming for a Medical Check Up for already passed interviews for the jobs. One of them was coming after some years in a neighbouring Gulf country. As usual with us Omanis – there are no barriers held when in discussing in the open things best kept hidden in your own chest – things like salary packages – because you do not know who the ‘enemy’ is out there – even that fellow smiling one!
So he was saying loud enough for the rest of us to overhear. For sure it was not bragging – but the usual honest oneself – even if one may counter by saying was not that ‘smart move’ – or even being naive! He was ‘returning home’ even if the package here was considerably smaller than what he was getting there – including the now being missed company provided accommodation. He was saying loud how much he was going to lose overall – and surely was more on ‘patriotism and nationalism’ – and his own and family future – as he smugly put it in!
Then ‘the more brighter’ of the lot was saying his family had their own businesses – but he was coming in just for the free housing loan being provided by that company – and to gain some field and practical experiences – before his ‘rich family’ gave him one company to run – or open his own new company that he had some ideas upon!
And the last one like poor me saying all his family were pinning his hopes on him – because he was the only boy to start working – whilst his elder sisters were all married – and one was an Engineer by education (local University) – but she was doing a non-Engineering job – though the pay was good. He cynically and wryly added in – to great laugh and mirth – that her husband was now enjoying instead – the fruits of their labours and investment by the family! But that is our ways – nothing is sacred and confidential – and all out for the rest of the world to know.
Image – Young Omani Boys Talking!
I have always said this bit – and this is the way those of our adversaries use the same easily provided and available information – even from within – to use as a weapon against ourselves – or even to cause divisions and discord between us!
Anyway, at this place I was paying more attention to this young girl (foreign – about five years old) talking to her Mother who was working as an Engineer at the place. Too bad she did not understand Arabic to hear the other conversations – particularly this part of an Engineering qualified local girl doing ‘non-Engineering’ work as the ‘only job offer she got’!
Images – Mother and Child Talking – They Can Teach Us Too!
If you are an avowed Reader of mine – one may remember of the incident of how I fought for a similar case when I was in Human Resources – and still working. I was actually propelled more into action when this poor girl lamented ‘that nobody is helping us – even those from our home town – and doing influential jobs here – because we have no ‘Wastah’ – or influence – if you do not know what it means! So I said to her – my grandparents were born there – so I will step in to help you! On hindsight it had costed me my job – and the new local partner of that company – who took over the business later on – knew but did ‘not lift a finger’ to help me – but was pleased to see me go – so he could bring in his own kind in! But that is another story for now!
So this young girl was talking ‘all kinds of rubbish’ things of what she would be doing in her future life – and her mother was patiently and understandingly listening! She too the young girl was talking loud for the rest of the world to hear – but it was only me overhearing – the rest were in their own conversations – and world! That should teach us – especially in dealing now more with our own daughters, sisters etc in society!
As a father of three girls – 2 as twins – I am fully aware of how girls especially ‘like to talk and ask inquisitive’ questions of the like – and I was dreading to myself if the tables were turned – and Madam was there – she would have hushed her daughter ‘not to speak such rubbish and nonsense’ – especially if she was a girl. And that ends up like the lamenting girl that there is no one out there to help us (girls!) – and all that follows. But then big boys talk more rubbish – like what I was encountering here.
So when I had the chance and opportunity I told off ‘the rich boy’ with my usual diplomatic and tact style – but really hitting you hard on the inside! It was none of my business anyway – but M is just like that – he will say ‘I will not get involved’ – but he does in the end! I told him – if I were still in HR – and I hear you saying what are your plans (just to get the housing loan and some experiences!) – then there is no job for you – even if you were ranked on top.
Sure enough used to his kind – he curtly replied ‘ I came second – but the top guy has already turned the offer and he was ‘Hobson’s Choice’ – the only choice left. Then I cruelly cut in – and said to him – The Company could re-advertise! That seemed to silence him – for awhile!
This week my youngest daughter started working as an Engineering Graduate. Her interviewers were asking her – there would be some trips to the Interior – where you have to sleep sometimes – and all men there. Would your Father object? Why the Father and not the Mother? Hard to imagine sometimes that we still need more changes on the workplaces!
My daughter replied – My Father will himself take me to the airport for the air trip to the Interior Desert Oil Locations! It was the Mother instead who did – but when you have only one old banger of a car left with you – and Madam is still working – what the heck! There is nothing you can do but watch – before the suitors file in for ‘a good catch in girl and salary’ – as the young boy had lamented on his elder sister!
By Majid Al Suleimany
Muscat – Sultanate of Oman